James May claims he ‘doesn’t understand Britain’ as he heads to Japan

In a break from having to tolerate the endless chiding from Jeremy Clarkson and Richard Hammond, James May has ditched them for his own adventure to Japan in an effort to grasp the nation’s culture a little better. However, while discussing whether that was a success or not, he admitted the current situation in Britain has left him puzzled.

In an interview with Express Online, James said he’s been fascinated by Japan for years and perhaps rather than use up his holidays there he thought a travelogue would be the best way to experience it

“I’ve been there quite a few times before and I really like it, and I wanted to learn more about it and experience it properly,” he explained.

The process of pitching the idea of a travel series to Japan was simple, claimed James.

“We said to Amazon, ‘Can we do a travelogue and can it be Japan?’ and they said, ‘Yes.’”

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“I often think that. If, say, I was to show our fixer Mai round, yes, I could explain quite a lot about Britain. Means, customs, stuff – I’d be able to say, ‘That’s because of this’ and ‘We don’t really do that, but we might do this,'” he remarked.

“I couldn’t take you to Japan and tell you about Japan yet because it’s too complicated and it takes a lifetime to learn.”

James explained he knew of people who have spent decades there, immersing themselves in the principles of Japanese society.

“I know people who went to work there for a year to learn Japanese and they ended up staying nearly two decades, because it took that long to get their heads around learning Japanese, being Japanese, and living in Japan.

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“It’s not intimidating, just very, very different. I still recommend it! It’s a tremendous place to visit.”

It was equally tremendous for James, most likely, as he made the show without interference from his The Grand Tour co-stars.

When he spoke about travelling without them to make a TV show, he admitted he didn’t “miss them”.

“I don’t miss the other two because this is a programme about what I think for the most part, and occasionally what the crew thinks, because they interrupt when they disagree.”

Our Man in Japan streams on Amazon Prime Video from 3rd January.


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